Astronomy comes from the Greeks and it means “star formation.” It’s a branch of science that is dedicated to studying outer space and everything it contains. All the sciences are investigations into God’s creation, and astronomy is no different.
Many people fear that the Bible condemns Christians from studying astronomy; however that’s not the case. God created our heavens and earth and knows how everything works together. He did make it after all. The Bible gives us information about the history of the universe and how God built it. It is our foundation on how we can come to understand the universe.
People typically rebuttal this by saying that the Bible isn’t a science textbook. This is true, because textbooks are created by imperfect humans. Textbooks have to change year after year when humans discover new things, or find evidence that contradicts previously held beliefs.
The Bible never changes and it never has to, because it was perfectly inspired by God. When it covers a specific topic, we can understand that it is a truth held by God. For example the most studied star in astronomy, the sun, is directly mentioned in the Bible 160 times.
Here are some things that the Bible says about astronomy and its teachings.
God Created the Universe
Right at the opening of the Bible, Genesis 1:1 declares that “in the beginning, God created the heavens” and that on the fourth day of His creative acts, “God made two great lights—the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars” (Genesis 1:16). The Bible teaches us that the origin of the heavens and all astronomical bodies contained in them is God Himself, the Creator of all things. Furthermore, the Bible teaches us that He is also the ruler of it, “sustaining all things by his powerful word” (Hebrews 1:3).
Be Wary of False Teachings
God said in Deuteronomy 4:19, "And beware lest you raise your eyes to heaven, and when you see the sun and the moon and the stars, all the host of heaven, you be drawn away and bow down to them and serve them, things that the Lord your God has allotted to all the peoples under the whole heaven." In Biblical times, worship of astrology was literal. Cultures worshiped the sun, moon, and stars as gods because the only planets viewable from the earth were Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. The planets in our solar system are even named after Roman gods.
Today, we don’t think of these celestial bodies as items to worship. However many in the scientific community do value the interpretation of space highly. They see their scientific findings above the historical account given the Bible. Astronomy is one of the hardest of the sciences to understand, mainly because the objects of study are so far away and not subject to human interaction. Because so many noted scientists are atheists, their work naturally does not take into consideration the existence of a creator. Christians that seek to study astrology and understand it must go in with the mindset that the Bible is the true account of all things, and that it cannot be contradicted. Science and faith can completely coexist, but we have to be wary of the devil trying to redirect our mind.
Truths From the Bible
The Bible was ahead of its times when it came to understanding the universe, because God already knew everything about it. For example, the Bible indicates that the earth is round. Isaiah 40:22 mentions this when it says “circle of the earth.” From our own scientific studies, we know that this is true. Job 26:10 also supports the earth being round.
Job 26:7 also suggests that the earth floats in space when it says God “hangs the earth on nothing.” Although this is very poetic sounding, it does seem to suggest that the earth isn’t sitting on top of a pedestal or hanging off of a limb.
One incredible piece of scripture comes from Isaiah 40:22 that teaches us that God is had expanded or “stretched out” the universe. The verse says that God stretches out the heavens like a curtain and spreads them out like a tent to dwell in. Most astronomers today believe that the universe is indeed expanding and growing, just like the Bible suggests.
The Bible teaches us the truth and history about our universe, as it was created by God lifetimes ago. Astronomers once mocked Christians for believing some of the teachings found in the Bible, but as we grow as a scientific community the truths are revealed. Continue to study the stars with a Christian outlook, and the more you learn the more we will be pointed back toward God.